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2011 Subaru Forester



  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    "... The 09's and 10's didn't have a temp gauge, and I would like to know if the 11 model has it."

    The Forester water temperature gauge does not display temperature. The needle rises to the middle and stays in one place there as long as the temperature is in the normal operating range of 150-205F. The needle is merely an indicator of cold, normal and too hot -- same as the indicator lights.

    I know this because I have a Forester with temperature gauge, and a Scion with temperature lights, and digital ScanGauges in both cars to show actual temperature.
  • fnamowiczfnamowicz Posts: 194
    Which 2011 model do you have?
  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    All Foresters had needle-style temperature indicators through 2008, which is what I have.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The new Touring model does have a needle-style temp gauge:

    They write:

    engine coolant temp gauge (so no blue cold engine light like all the other models).

    Let me see if I can imbed the image:

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,908
    Atherton -

    I had not heard of the ScanGauge before now, but looked it up and it looks quite nice! Did you have to change the temp sensors in either car in order to get that functionality, or just plug the tool into the port?
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    The ScanGauge just plugs into the OBDII port under the dash. I have one on my 2008 Forester auge/4SGcoverday.jpg
    And in my 2006 Scion xB I_1.jpg

    They show much information from the ECU, much more than just coolant temperature. And they can read diagnostic codes, and perform mileage and range calculations.
  • fnamowiczfnamowicz Posts: 194
    This is a type A instrument panel only available on the touring model.
    The rest have a blue light.
  • fnamowiczfnamowicz Posts: 194
    We are discussing the 2011 models.
  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    edited January 2011
    "We are discussing the 2011 models."

    I thought we were discussing needle vs. light temperature indicators on the 2011 models. Both are indicators, not gauges. They do not show temperature, only cold, normal and hot. And normal covers a 50-degree spread.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    So even the needle is a "dummy gauge"?
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Yup, even the need is a dummy gauge. Cold, Normal, Hot.

    When I was discussing putting gauges in with the forester/impreza guru at Subaru, I told him for the STi I would like to see digital gauges similar to the ones I have in my CTSV, which is a small LCD panel embedded in the cluster where you can scroll through several gauges that show things in digital/analog format on a dot-matrix screen.

    Oil Temp
    Coolant Temp
    Oil Pressure
    Tire Pressure (4 corners on a car)
    Trans Temp (even though it's a MT)

    I told him to add in a boost gauge for the STi as well.

    The great thing is that if any of them move outside the normal range, it automatically switches to that gauge and flashes a warning and beeps. It was great on track when I was over-driving my tires on the caddy, the pressure increased and I got an over-pressure warning.

    Similarly with my caddy when I was pushing real hard my oil temp went to 275 and it flashed me warning me that it was too hot.

    This is technology standard in my 2005 CTSV, so hopefully we'll see this in the future on at least the premium models.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Agreed - STI models should include things like that, to justify the cost difference from a regular WRX.
  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    edited January 2011
    Some may prefer the needle even if it is a dummy gauge, as it does show movement which dummy lights cannot. The needle slowly moves from cold to normal, where it stays throughout a 50-degree operating range, and then it will slowly move again if the normal range is exceeded. (I have never actually seen that.)

    What I like about the digital ScanGauge is the ability to see the actual temperature within the operating range.

    For instance, I can see on my Scion that using the heater too soon drives the temperature down a few degrees, and even though the blue light goes out at 139 degrees, it takes a very long time or never for the tiny motor to reach full 184-degree operating temperature in winter stop-and-shop errand driving with passengers hogging the heat.

    It is also interesting to hear the fan come on idling in summer traffic, look down and watch 210 degrees drop to 200 degrees, and wonder how many degrees it would take for the red light to come on.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Just an FYI, those temps are only as good as the sensors sending the information. Really any gauges you see on a car are only useful to see if the car is running outside of where it normally runs.

    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    The ScanGauge does not use sensors. It plugs into the car's OBDII port under the dash, and reads data from the car's own ECU (computer).
    It can show 12 readings, but only 4 at a time.

    The ECU gets its data to monitor and run the engine from the car's own sensors, as you say.

    It is interesting, if not useful, to watch the such things as coolant temperature (FWT), intake air temperature (IAT), timing advance, voltage, fuel rate, while they vary in reaction to driving conditions.

    For instance, IAT. When cold started, the IAT and FWT are the same, say 25F degrees. As you drive off, the FWT temperature climbs toward normal, but can be reversed for a moment by turning the heater on full fan and full vent. The IAT will continue to be 25F even when the engine is warmed up up, as long as the car is moving relatively fast. Once the engine is stopped and frigid air is no longer being drawn in, the intake system absorbs heat from the hot engine, and the IAT after a restart will be warmer than ambient. Cruising on the Interstate, IAT will stabilize around 7F above ambient. Idling in traffic on a hot summer day with AC, the IAT can rise to 50F above ambient.

    All this info may not be useful, but it is at least interesting to watch the information coming out of the ECU.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I think you misunderstood me. The temperatures that the sensors that the OBDII read are not necessarily correct. The tolerances on the sensors isn't as precise as one would think. A lot of the ECU logic takes into account variances from normal, not absolute temperatures.

    A lot of folks read gauges (be them OBDII or regular gauges) as absolute but really they are only useful to see when there is a problem if it's operating outside of your normal area.

    I can push the temps down on my caddy by running the AC/Defroster by about 15 degrees F because that forces the fans to come on even if the ECU isn't calling for them to be on.

    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • aathertonaatherton Posts: 617
    You said "I can push the temps down on my caddy by running the AC/Defroster by about 15 degrees F because that forces the fans to come on even if the ECU isn't calling for them to be on. "

    By turning manually turning on the fans with the AC/defroster switch, you cause them to reduce the coolant that 15 degrees, which the ECU then recognizes.

    Is summer, when the AC causes the coolant temperature to reach 110 degrees, the sensor turns on my fans and reduces the coolant by 15 degrees, which the ECU then recognizes.

    Whether the radiator fans are turned on by you or by a sensor, the ECU only sees the actual temperature and does not care what caused that temperature.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Right but those temps are not accurate. All sensors in a car are really only relative to "normal".

    My point being if you see 200 degrees on your gauge, the ACTUAL temp may be 195 degrees or 210 degrees.

    Gauges are only useful to see when something changes. For instance your car normally runs at say 200 degrees, well if all of a sudden it's running at 220 degrees you know there is an issue.

    The temp may not actually be 220 but there is something going on.

    A lot of folks believe the numbers they see on OBDII readers or gauges but they are really just supposed to be used for variance readings.

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,317
    My family moved to southern, Fairfield County, CT (10 miles from NY border) over the summer and we've found driving around this winter to be pretty difficult. Both my 2001 Honda Prelude Type SH & my wife's 2010 Acura TSX are equipped with Michelin Pilot Arctic Alpin snow tires at all 4 corners. They don't seem to plow very well, at least not when I leave for work at 6:30 AM to drive to the South Bronx. My wife has had some difficulty navigating semi or barely plowed streets as well as snow banks at the foot of people's driveways. I'm thinking of possibly replacing her TSX with a Forester Limited XT. I like the ground clearance, standard AWD, the fact that you "sit down in it" like a car (as opposed to the "sit on top of it" like an SUV), the cargo room (although our Acura has a very deep and spacious trunk), Subaru's reputation for reliability (Her Dad is on his 3rd Outback) & quality.

    One of my concerns is with the transmission. The Automatic is a 4 speed which is pretty archaic (I'm sure it is bulletproof by now, but even GM has 6 speed autos now). Are there plans out there to bring the CVT to the Forester line? Can the CVT handle the torque of the turbo or are they developing a 6 speed automatic?

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I think the CVT is very likely, though we're not sure when.

    The XT's engine is very torquey so it's still more than quick enough. My wife has a non-turbo model and even that is adequate.

    8.9" of ground clearance and 25 degree approach and departure angles are class-best for the crossovers that aren't trucky.

    We love ours.

    One BIG problem, though - we fight for the keys when it snows. Today she won, so I had to park my Miata (summer tires) and drive the family minivan to work.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,317
    I'm sure the XT's turbo motor is quick & the n/a motor is adequate. I'm just thinking that the gas mileage & acceleration on the turbo could be improved by the addition of the CVT or 2 extra gears.

    Maybe the move I'll make is to lease one really cheap towards the end of the year (n/a) with a 12K per year lease. This way i can supplement my Prelude's mileage (At my current clip, about 21K per year) & we can still keep her TSX which we love.

    One of the advantages of having to be at work at 7:30 AM, I'd take whatever car I want :P

    I'd probably end up using the car more in the winter during the days when the snows comes down (unless she has to work, Monday & Thursday) & she'd probably end up driving it more over the summer (taking the kids to the beach).

    If anybody has time & own an '09+ Forester, can you measure the cargo area front to back & left to right? Thanks!

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,317
    Wow Montreal! Thanks for the fantastic link! The "A" measurement on the Forester (the one I asked for) is 35.5". I went into the garage and measured the same dimension on our TSX. 45".

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That can be misleading, make sure you account for the width between the wheel wells, i.e. measurement "E", which is 42.2" on the Forester.

    For instance, the Accord Crosstour is around 33" there, so the Forester is about 9" wider (!).

    You want a wide opening, sure, but you also want things like a dog crate to fit inside between those wheel wells.

    The Forester's compact suspension really helps there, it embarrasses the Accord Crosstour, at least.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,908
    Overall though, it is a fairly compact space. That was the first thing I noticed about it (aside from the generous occupant space), but decided I could adjust to that restriction through the addition of my hitch-mounted cargo tray and roof basket, when needed (which is not often).
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Well, true, but it is a compact crossover, after all.

    Subaru did shape the space very well. In their biggest-box test, it beats a lot of bigger SUVs, even some mid-sizers, because the cargo area itself is shaped like a box.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,317
    That's my biggest beef with a lot of the wagons these days (Audi A4, BMW 3 series come to mind) is that most manufacturers are so concerned with making their wagons "sporty" instead of practical that they rake the rear window so much that it severly impedes on the cargo capacity.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I was looking at minivans at the Philly Auto Show and the Quest makes up for a shorter cargo floor by boxing off the rear end.

    I like it when they design around a single boxy shape, rather than scoop out little nooks and crannies after the fact.

    The new rear suspension intrudes much less than the Struts from my 1998 model did.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587 four-car_news

    It has the dog-leg con rods, like the Tribeca's 3.6l (EZ36).

    Dual AVCS.

    DI coming soon (should have been now).

    Trans coming (when?), more efficient engine peripherals - does that mean Electric Power Steering?

    148hp 2.0l variant - first time I've seen the power output stated. So that will be the base Impreza engine. Other sources put output at 160hp for the 2l, though.

    40mpg! I hope!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587 on-launched-in-australia

    Bob sent these links to me, my reactions (I'll copy/paste):

    Wow, what a beautiful blue on that front page! Love the blue alcantara seats as well. Why can't we get that? Gorgeous...

    They made the backup cam standard even on the XS, sort of our Premium model. Self-leveling rear suspension, too, which disappeared here with the LL Bean models.


    "As with the auto WRX STI, the Forester S-Edition's transmission features downshift blipping control".

    Sounds like the Nissan 370Z.

    Gas mileage for the 265hp engine is identical to the XT's engine, too, so no loss in MPG. The question becomes - why sell the base XT turbo at all? Ditch it.

    They have turbo manuals there, too. I'm so jealous! At least offer the blipping control 5EAT.

    From the 2nd article....

    "0-100km/h time of just 6.5 seconds"

    That's quick, keep in mind that's 0-62mph. 0-60 should be around 6 flat.

    Cost is $3500, or about half that in US dollars.

    Looks like it gets VTD AWD, too, they mention a 45/55 split.

    Also has new luminescent instruments.

    Much more than meets the eye!
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